Tomorrow is Valentine's Day so there's no better time for me to talk about something that I truly believe in.
I'm often asked what I think organizations and professionals working with teen parents and youth need to do more of. My answer is simple: we need to make sure that love is infused into every aspect of our work. The young people that we serve must feel valued and cared for or the impact that we're trying to create will fall flat. We may have some success but not optimal success.
Some of the teen parents entering our program or sitting in our college-readiness workshops have never heard their parents say the words, "I love you." Others have been in hurtful, traumatizing relationships. And some may feel unloved simply because they are teen parents. Regardless, our program would not be effective if our Scholars didn't know through our words, our programming, and the way we interact with them, that we truly care for them.
I don't want our Scholars to succeed to prove the success of our program. I want them to succeed because I know that they can, they deserve to, and the world will be a better place because they will.
Happy Valentine's Day to you and thank you for your love and support of Generation Hope!